Conservation District to Offer Water Quality Monitoring Devices
Washington PA Observer Reporter
4 March 2014
WAYNESBURG – The Greene County Conservation District is initiating
a new project designed to monitor water quality in homes and
streams throughout the county, especially those near current or
future Marcellus Shale development.
The Conservation District is seeking volunteers who live in rural
areas of the county and obtain their water from either a well or
Homeowners are encouraged to participate whether they have
Marcellus Shale development in their area or not, as participation
in the program is an easy way to learn more about the quality of
water entering their homes.
Project participants will receive, at no cost to them, an
electronic monitoring device called a CATTfish.
The CATTfish device was created by Carnegie Mellon University and
was successfully used in Washington County. In the home, the
easy-to-use device is simply placed in a toilet tank and monitors
conductivity and temperature.
Unexpected results in these values would alert homeowners to
potential water quality problems that would require more
The Conservation District will host an orientation this spring for
participants during which they will receive their monitoring
devices and be shown how to use them. Once a month, participants
will need to send the data collected by their devices to the
Conservation District for inclusion in a county-wide water quality
database. The Conservation District will also provide
comprehensive water testing where data from CATTfish devices
indicate it is appropriate.
Additionally, the Conservation District will be placing water
quality monitoring devices in streams throughout the county. The
District is seeking homeowners who have streams on their property
to host these devices. This will involve no work on the part of
the homeowner as Conservation District staff would be responsible
for installation, periodic data retrieval and maintenance of these
Homeowners interested in participating with this project can
download a pre-project questionnaire from the Conservation
District’s website at www.co.greene.pa.us/gccd and e-mail the
completed form to Jared D. Zinn, the county watershed specialist,
For more information, call Zinn at 724-852-5278.